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To think it is hard to be a teenager

(31 Posts)
Inyournightdress Sun 16-Oct-16 22:39:35

Was talking to a friend today and she was complaining about her dd (15) and how easy she has it. She kept saying 'what I wouldn't give to be a teenager again'.

I couldn't think of anything worse than being a teenager again - especially in today's world. Everything was full on angst and insecurity, you aren't sure of yourself and you don't fit in anywhere. Factor that in with all of today's social media pressures and the fact kids today are expected to over excel in everything it seems from exam results to multiple extra-curricular activities, have an amazing social life and probably a part time job as well.

Am I the only one who feels this way?

ssd Sun 16-Oct-16 22:41:34

absolutely agree with you

I have 2 teens and I feel for them. I try to support them as best I can but the whole social media thing baffles me, yet their wee lives depend on it.

Smartleatherbag Sun 16-Oct-16 22:44:20

It was a really tough time for me, and for most people imo.

Haffdonga Sun 16-Oct-16 22:44:54

I'd hate to be a teenager There's so much more pressure on them to get good grades, get a good job, be attractive, wear the right clothes, go to the right parties, say the right thing on social media ... it goes on and on and it was nothing like as pressurised for me 30 odd years ago as for my teens now.

And then read what people on MN think about teenagers. They seem to be hated by everyone except their mums. sad

Inyournightdress Sun 16-Oct-16 22:50:36

smartleatherbag I agree, I know a lot of my school friends went through some hard stuff when I was a teen and people definitely forget how vulnerable teenagers can be. I remember my English literature teacher lecturing us all at 14 about how none of us will have experienced any hardships in our lives yet. How the f would she know.

PrincessHairyMclary Sun 16-Oct-16 22:51:15

I work in a Secondary School, you couldn't pay me to go back to that again. Thy all seem so stressed and anxious.

Wolfiefan Sun 16-Oct-16 22:55:19

I completely agree. I used to work in a school where the Head told the Secondary kids these were the best years of my life. I wanted to run up there and yell he was talking bollocks. May have cost me my job!
If someone told me those would be the best years of my life I think I may have actually killed myself.
Expected to behave like an adult.
Treated like a child.
Sodding hormones.
Friends and falling in love/lust with totally unsuitable or unobtainable.
Family. Hmmm.
No control over your life.
Exam pressure.
No idea of what you want.
Peer pressure and worrying about how others see you.
Bugger that!

BoopTheSnoot Sun 16-Oct-16 22:56:01

I wouldn't be a teenager again if you paid me. All that angst, the extreme emotions, the social anxieties, the peer pressure, and bloody hell- THE HORMONES.
No, no, no, no. For me, being a teenager sucked the big one.

mycatstares Sun 16-Oct-16 22:58:44

I agree 100%.

The first real soppy teenage love was a lovely time though!

QOD Sun 16-Oct-16 23:00:10

My dd is massively suffering with anxiety
Most of it is due to bloody social media

DullUserName Sun 16-Oct-16 23:03:35

Agree totally!
My DCs looked horrified when I told them what my O level grades were. The pressure that they feel to get high grades is crazy. They think I'm clever and were genuinely shocked to learn that I got 'only' 3As, 3Bs & 2Cs. DC1 is taking 12 subjects!!!

Inyournightdress Sun 16-Oct-16 23:08:48

I've spoken about this before on here but my dd has an eating disorder and I do think social media has made it ten times worse. Her and her friends seem to spend hours on instagram looking at this girls with amazing bodies and comparing themselves.

acornsandnuts Sun 16-Oct-16 23:13:40

Oh goodness totally agree. Horrible years. Although DH loved his teenage years, I wonder if boys back then didn't have the pressure that girls did.

JellyBelli Sun 16-Oct-16 23:17:16

There is no way I'd want to go through that twice, and it seems so muc h worse today. All the pressure from social media, and everyone expected to look like a model, its all so petty and pointless.

Scribblegirl Sun 16-Oct-16 23:17:31

Couldn't agree more. My friends and I were saying this over drinks the other day. At a push I might do uni again, but I wouldn't dream of re-living anything pre 18. It was generally shit, with interludes of excitement that usually scared the crap out of me anyway.

HappyAxolotl Sun 16-Oct-16 23:26:08

No way. Growing up isn't easy to start with. Puberty and navigating first crushes wasn't fun. Then there is the fact that kids can be so cruel to the unpopular ones. School was a bear pit but at least the bullying was confined to school hours. Nowadays with social media it is 24/7. And there seems to be a lot more pressure on kids now to have sex at a young age.

All that plus getting jobs or college/uni places seems to be getting ever more difficult. I feel really sorry for teens today if I'm honest.

SirChenjin Sun 16-Oct-16 23:26:44

Being a teenager has always been a mixed bag - exam pressure, unrequited love, pressure to conform to a particular group, coupled with the absolute freedom to do and be what you want with no responsibility whatsoever. I wouldn't be a teenager again if you paid me.

ImissGrannyW Sun 16-Oct-16 23:26:47

I have an extraordinarily tall and extraordinarily unsophisticated almost 15 yr old.

She doesn't understand why "old" people are frightened of her (she has experienced their fear). She has no interest in boys and has no boobs. And she has shed-loads of homework that I couldn't complete. And really bad PMT that seems to last for 2 weeks.

I wouldn't changes places with her for all the tea in China. YANBU

ollieplimsoles Sun 16-Oct-16 23:27:19

The most unhappy years of my life were my teens, I wouldn't go back and there is so much I would change...

Inyournightdress Sun 16-Oct-16 23:44:57

I'm glad so many mumsnetters seem to agree with me. I've heard so many people in real life repeat the fallacy that the teenage years are the best years of a persons life. Yet nobody seems to actually have enjoyed them.

HellonHeels Mon 17-Oct-16 00:34:48

I hated being a teenager. Utter misery. Uncomfortable in my body, didn't know how to choose clothes that looked right and felt comfortable. Struggled to manage periods into late teens and beyond. Exam stress, anxiety, disordered eating, self hatred. I've got happier every decade since then.

However, I work in a university and think our students are fab - lively, excited about things, doing stuff for the first time. I really like teens.

Haffdonga Mon 17-Oct-16 19:58:54

To the poster who wondered if it's easier for teenaged boys than girls - not in my experience. There is pressure for boys to have the right body-shape from a ridculously young age. Boys start going to the gym far younger than is healthy for their still-developing bodies in pursuit of a six pack.

Then listen to what people say about them. Only yesterday on MN a mother of a teenage boy was told he was a rapist because he'd got his teenage girlfirend pregnant. Parents here are repeatedly urged to throw out their teenaged sons or cut all contact with them for minor anti social behaviour such as slamming doors or swearing. Some mothers of younger dcs on MN seem to think that it's sensible to call the police if a group of teenage boys simply meet in a group in a local park.

Then there's the exam pressure for both girls and boys. I spoke to a dc the other day who'd got several Cs at GCSE. He was embarrassed and told me he'd failed all his GCSEs. When I told him Cs were by no means a fail he was genuinly surprised and said Oh but my school told me that only As and B's were pass grades

Just look at the massively increased number of teens suffering mental health issues. It's so clear that teen life is shit in the UK. sad

AVirginLitTheCandle Mon 17-Oct-16 20:56:41


I wouldn't be a teenager again even if you paid me.

AVirginLitTheCandle Mon 17-Oct-16 21:00:31

Then there's the exam pressure for both girls and boys. I spoke to a dc the other day who'd got several Cs at GCSE. He was embarrassed and told me he'd failed all his GCSEs. When I told him Cs were by no means a fail he was genuinly surprised and said Oh but my school told me that only As and B's were pass grades

That's actually one of the reasons why I would hate to be a teenager today. There's just so much pressure to do well.

I did my GCSEs nearly ten years ago now and whilst of course there was pressure to do well I do think it has gotten worse it recent years.

And of course the pressure to go to university has increased.

CancellyMcChequeface Mon 17-Oct-16 22:24:25

I'd never want to be a teenager again. It's awful having so little control over your own life. I was told repeatedly, by people who knew about the terrible depression I was suffering with, that being a teenager was 'the best time of my life.' They couldn't have done better if they were trying to make me feel hopeless and despairing.

I'm very glad that they were completely wrong. grin The increase in responsibility is more than made up for by the freedom, and not being looked down on purely because of your age - I was the quietest, most harmless teenager ever, and very upset at being stereotyped.

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